College is often a time of experimentation. After all, it may be your first time living independently, without parental supervision. Drug use among college students is quite common. This can lead to the misconception that a college campus is a safe space to use drugs – without any legal repercussions.
This, however, is far from true. Using drugs in college can land you with a drug charge – which could follow you for the rest of your life.
In Indiana, you can get a Class A misdemeanor charge for possession of even a small amount of marijuana. This charge goes on your permanent criminal record, even if you’re not convicted. If you are found guilty of possession of less than 30 grams of marijuana, you could have to pay up to $5,000 in fines and spend up to a year in jail.
A drug charge could also compromise your academic future. If your college has strict rules against drug use. They could suspend you or put you on academic probation. You could also lose any federally funded student aid you receive. A criminal record could also make it difficult for you to get accepted to any other higher education program down the road.
Having a criminal record of any kind can create challenges for you throughout your life. Employers are often less likely to hire someone with a criminal record. Your record will show up anytime someone runs a background check on you – making it harder to rent an apartment or secure a loan.
One stupid mistake in college could have a lasting impact on the rest of your life. If you’re facing a criminal charge, it’s important to seek the help of a criminal defense attorney to help you avoid a conviction. If you’ve been found guilty, then it’s worth exploring whether your case qualifies for expungement – which can erase your criminal record and help you move on with your life.